Cloacas

with Flying Wall Studios
Posted on: March 11, 2011

OVERVIEW
Cloacas, a Santa Fe-based acoustic music quintet, combines elements of classical, folk, Americana and American gothic styles. Cloacas’ original compositions utilize banjo, viola, mandolin, melodica, double bass, bowed saw, and homemade instruments. The band’s live shows integrate costumes and set design with musical performance to transport audiences “sideways through time.”

Cloacas is seeking SPREAD funding for a project that will re-contextualize live music performance into a visual art form through the use of film and puppets. Cloacas members Damon and Sabrina Griffith have made thousands of puppets over the last decade for collectors worldwide under the name of Puppet Meat Market (now Flying Wall Studios). They will create an all-puppet cast and set for a short film. The film’s screening will be accompanied by live performance of an original score composed by Cloacas. The screening event(s) will include a gallery-style exhibition of the film’s puppets, allowing audience members to see the characters up-close and “in person.”

The film and score will tell the tale of Wide-mouth Mason, an honest everyman and lone stagehand and his brush with the insidious Oatmeal Commission.

IMPLEMENTATION
Resources for project materials and labor are already in place. Cloacas is seeking a SPREAD grant to retain the services and equipment needed to shoot and edit a high-quality film of the puppet performance and to present a screening event for the film’s release.

IMPACT
The project will give audiences young and old an opportunity to experience a unique form of media and expression — the integration of silent film and live musical accompaniment, that have largely been overshadowed by the development of media technology. By creating an “old-fashioned multimedia” project whose beauty, meaningfulness and success dep equally upon the mediums of film, puppetry and live music performance, Cloacas seeks to re-contextualize, rather than simply reclaim, these forms of expression. The project’s aim is to demonstrate the relevance and potential of not only an aesthetic, but also a set of methodologies that are largely missing in today’s world.

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